Astonishing Result Roars Past Previous Year Record of $825,000

Work Continues to Grow Catholic Elementary School Enrollments

(LOUISVILLE, Ky.) – The Catholic Education Foundation of the Archdiocese of Louisville (the “Foundation”) today announced that its 28th annual Salute to Catholic School Alumni Dinner (the “Salute”) established a historic new high in funds raised in support of its mission.

Held on the evening of March 14 in the Grand Ballroom of downtown Louisville’s Galt House Hotel, the Salute hosted a sell-out crowd of over 1,600 guests, continuing its tradition as a hallmark community event in the Commonwealth.

This year’s event soared to a historic record of $1,000,000 in net proceeds, rocketing past the previous year record of $825,000. Foundation President Richard A. Lechleiter remarked, “Who would have ever dreamed that this event would raise so much to brighten the futures of so many families! We are truly humbled by this result, and thank God for its unprecedented success.”

All of the funds from the Salute will be used to provide tuition assistance to families who cannot afford the full cost of a Catholic elementary education for their children. The Archdiocese of Louisville sponsors 40 Catholic elementary schools in central Kentucky with aggregate student enrollments of 13,500.

This highly successful event was co-chaired by the Most Reverend Joseph E. Kurtz, Archbishop of Louisville, and Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin.

The event’s astounding financial result will allow more students and their families to access a Catholic elementary school journey that they cannot otherwise afford by themselves. During the event, Mr. Lechleiter noted that the organization’s slogan – “The Answer is YES!” – has become a mandate to assist every family who reaches out to the Foundation. “Thanks to our ever-generous donors, in each of the last three years, every single student who reached out to us – and qualified for tuition assistance – in fact earned an award. What could be better for our young families and our community!”

The Salute also was highlighted by its recognition of six distinguished honorees whose success in life was nurtured by their Catholic education. The Salute Class of 2018 included: Michael D. Brennan (Trinity High School); Richard S. Buehner (Saint Xavier High School); Barbara Lechleiter McGrath (Sacred Heart Academy); Charlotte Knoop Stengel (Presentation Academy); Jennifer Metzger Stinnett (Holy Cross High School); and the Most Reverend Charles C. Thompson, Archbishop of Indianapolis.

In addition, Mr. David P. Calzi, Global Coordinating Partner at EY, received the Foundation’s distinguished Community Service Award.  Ms. Teresa J. Roberts, an instructor at Presentation Academy in Louisville, was recognized as the outstanding educator in the Archdiocese through the Father Joseph McGee Award.

Archbishop Kurtz remarked, “We are so deeply thankful to our entire central Kentucky community for their enormous generosity toward the mission of the Catholic Education Foundation. This off-the-charts support will enable us to help thousands of families provide the gift of a Catholic education to their children. The unique Catholic school experience that connects Faith, Family and Learning truly provides an education that lasts a lifetime. Indeed, The Answer is YES!”

Major benefactors of this year’s Salute, each of whom contributed $25,000 or more, include Fifth Third Bank of Kentucky (founding benefactor); Norton Healthcare; Air Hydro Power; Brandeis Machinery and Supply Company; Brown-Forman Corporation; KentuckyOne Health; LG&E/KU Energy; The Bufford Family Foundation; David and Cathy Durik; the Steve and Kathy Ford Family; David and Jennie Heintzman; Dan and Lisa Jones; John and Sarah Lechleiter; Paul and Maureen Lechleiter; Neil and Anne Ramsey; the Karen and Hank Robinson Family; Peggy Noe Stevens and Family; the Daniel C. Ulmer Family; Tom and Rhonda Wimsett; and the Richard and Janice Lechleiter Family.

About the Catholic Education Foundation

For over 200 years, Catholic schools have contributed significantly to the social, spiritual and economic fabric of our entire community. The Catholic Education Foundation is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization dedicated to the growth and vitality of Catholic education in the Archdiocese of Louisville. Since 1999, the Foundation has awarded over $29 million in support of Catholic education.

The Foundation and its funding partners – the Archdiocese of Louisville, the 40 Catholic elementary schools, School Choice Scholarships, and Community Catholic Center – currently support 3,000 Catholic elementary school students in central Kentucky through tuition assistance grants aggregating $6.5 million. Visit the Foundation at www.ceflou.org.